Side Effects of Phenergan for Migraine Nausea?

Health Professional

Full Question:

I have severe nausea. I have taken Phenergan for many years and found it to be very effective.  It was easy/cheap to get.

Now, the doctors are telling me that it has side effects and are refusing to prescribe it.  I am given nothing or ineffective substitutes.  Have started using an herbal remedy.

What do you say? Thanks, Vanessa.

Full Answer:

Dear Vanessa;

We're not aware of any NEW concerns with promethazine (Phenergan) to explain a significant change in prescribing. Like other drugs in its family (neuroleptic, phenothiazine) it has the potential to cause significant side effects, including tardive dyskinesia, sedation, and akathisia (the creepy-crawlies). Very rarely it can induce neuroleptic malignant syndrome (muscle stiffness, fever, blood pressure changes, and confusion).  In general, it is not recommended for use in the elderly as this population is more susceptible to the adverse effects.

Herbal remedies have contraindications, interactions with other medications, and potential side effects just as prescription drugs do. "Natural" isn't always safer.

For nausea, there are other medications available which work differently, and while they may have their own set of potential side effects, may be less concerning. Please talk to your provider for alternatives, including herbal remedies

Thank you for your question,
Dave Watson and Teri Robert


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